April 30, 2009

The build-up

Chris Pronger was on Jim Rome's radio show, and amazingly, he used a few multisyllabic words. He even used the word "adept" at one point, which made my head fall off.

The interview was a rather ho hum adventure in nothingness because elbowing doesn't translate to radio. But even though it was Rome and the world's most disgusting land mammal trying to out-monotone each other, at least hockey talk was getting out to the masses. And say what you want about Rome, at least he acknowledges hockey's awesomeness on rare occasion. The altogether not-at-all-noteworthy conversation was posted at the OC Register. Nothing major.

“They play a very sound defensive game,” Pronger said. “I said this last year to somebody: They play so well defensively that a lot of times it gets overlooked because they control the puck, they control the play. They’re a very skilled team, but their defensive play gets overlooked because they score a lot of goals.

“You very rarely see Detroit give up a 2-on-1 or a 3-on-2. They’re very adept at playing defense, and because of that they’re able to turn the puck over and they have a great transition.”


The true stars of the show can be found past the end of Pronger's mumbling. There's the typical jarring and jabbering Daniel says, "The Ducks taking the series in 4 games isn’t going to be all that exciting. I think they may just prolong it to 6 to let the Wings think they have a shot." WINGS-FAN comes back with, "You must be delusional if you think for a second that the Ducklets will beat the wings let alone think they have a choice on how many games they want the wings to hang around." This is all in good fun.

Then the plight of the unemployed started to become funny.

Twirvca adds, "Maybe with their free time while waiting in the unemployment line, the Detroit fans should check the history books for the last time these two teams met in a playoff series."

CK couldn't resist either: "I am so tired of other teams’ fans coming to our boards and telling us we don’t know hockey. But the replies are hilarious. I’d rather have a job than know everything about hockey. Of course, I have both. ;)"

But the best one of the bunch, an aborted fetus by the name of Your Mom says, "Ha!!! Two comments by two DeadThing fans; I see a common thread here? Detroit and unemployed!!!"

Wait a minute -- "DeadThings"? Dead Things, really? He actually used Dead Things. He could've added a knock-knock joke and "Show me the Money" and that comment wouldn't have been as dated.

This series is still more than two full days away, and it already feels skull-fuckingly intense. I love it. But at the same time, even though I thought nothing on this planet could possibly offend me, the unemployment stuff kind of blurs a line. It's not so much an indictment on Duck fans as it is on people who use the Internet like it's some sort of anonymity glory hole. One of the only drawbacks to being a fan in the 21st century is that you have to put up with people who think they can stick their comments wherever they please without regard, no matter the content, because there isn't a face attached to it. There's still somebody on the other side of that wall slobbing your knob reading it and interpreting it. People who don't understand that (or worse, don't give a shit) put a slight damper on the whole Internet/sports thing for me.

Mr. Quack Quack had a good follow up to these comments with this, however:

We have just as much unemployment in California - I’m thankfull that I’m not standing in that line and am ashamed of my fellow fans who want to make light of the Detroit unemployed.

That's cool.


I think that's enough soap box to last me a lifetime. Let's start this damn thing already.

Go Wings.

April 29, 2009

Pavel Datsyuk: Hart Finalist

Some raunchy good news from Ansar Khan.

The Red Wings' Pavel Datsyuk is one of the three finalists for the Hart Trophy as league MVP. The official annoucement is due in about an hour. Don't know for sure who the other two finalists are, but it's safe to assume Washington's Alex Ovechkin and Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin are the other two.

Datsyuk is the first Red Wing to be named a Hart finalist since Sergei Fedorov won the award in 1994.

This is great. Yeah you can say it's just a fucking award, but still, come on. This was deserved. If it doesn't go to Malkin I will be surprised, but the nomination is cool enough.


Speaking of Fedorov (segue)

Just like old times, eh? I mean literally, just like it: this goal was nearly identical to his Game 3 winner in the 1998 Cup Finals -- coming down on the same wing, he pulled up to his forehand, and before the D-man could process Fed's next move, the puck was roofed short side, with Kolzig staring at his glove. Lundqvist was in that same, statuesque pose as Kolzig was.

Once again I was thwarted in my attempts to find video of this. If you find it, send/comment a link or something.

April 28, 2009

A series two years in the making

Western Conference Semifinals
Red Wings vs. Ducks

It seems like just yesterday I was in a prone, motionless heap on the living room floor (calm down, I was clothed), feeling like the Ducks had run a train through my soul. The gutty 2007 Red Wings left everything out on the ice and it still wasn't enough. I, perhaps like many of you, have never felt as emotionally spent after a series as this one.


This series is what separates hockey from every other sport on the planet. You're literally hoping that everyone makes it out alive.

The first round comes to a close tonight, and then we'll finally devote our entire attention to Anaheim. For now: I just wrote a massive paper spanning two days of work and I need to rest the trusty fingers for a minute.


Let's go Red Vings

J.J. wins

Oh, this is rich.

(By the way, did you know that the voice talent of Captain Planet includes LeVar Burton and Whoopi Goldberg? Or that the show was created by Ted Turner? Fuck off, no you didn't.)

April 27, 2009

Other teams playing hockey

Any day now.


Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game 6
Capitals 5 - 3 Rangers

Russo's Rants:

I can’t see at all how the Rangers win this series now. Boy, Rangers coach John Tortorella put this series in a whole world of hurt for the Blueshirts. As I mentioned on the blog a few days ago before it happened, I would have also considered scratching Sean Avery, but only if they actually lost Game 4.

But he scratched Avery in Game 5. The Rangers didn’t show up, then Tortorella gets himself suspended for Game 6. Plus, Avery returns and is a shell of his former self. As color analyst extraordinaire Ed Olczyk telestrated during one sequence, Avery was so trying to behave, he intentionally was refusing to even check anybody.

Russo gets the green highlighter treatment since he's a Minnesota guy. I could tell you were curious about that one. And colors are fucking amazing by the way.

Per Scotty Hockey:

Should the league do the right thing and suspend the repeat offender Brashear long-term? Do you think Brash will use the Chris Simon defense - that he was hit first and 'concussed'? Say what you want about Sean Avery's antics, he doesn't attempt to injure - just to annoy.

I never thought I'd say these words, but I hope the Rangers win tomorrow. Before the series started I had them winning in seven, but I didn't anticipate these circumstances obviously. Still, absolutely nobody is giving them a shot tomorrow, and according to my own personal view on twisted nonsensical logic, that puts NY at an advantage.


Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game 6
Blackhawks @ Flames

Five Hole Fanatics has an interesting post up on Miikka Kiprusoff's expected stats vs. actual stats.

Of all the NHL goalies that played this season, only Raycroft, Budaj, Legace and Lalime under-performed their expected GAA to a greater degree than Kipper according to this process. Toskala and Ersberg tied with Kiprusoff at +.24. The delta between his expected SV% and actual also placed him at the bottom of the list - tied with Marty Turco and ahead of only the Colorado tenders, Ersberg, Toskala, Legace and Lalime.

hypothesized last summer that we'd see something like this out of Kipper this season based on his steadily declining stats, although looking at stuff like this now I'm still slightly surprised at how far he's slipped. The Flames probably didn't even really get replacement level performance out of him this season - and he's signed for another five more years. The question now becomes: is this as low as he goes?


Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game 6
Sharks @ Ducks

Per Mr. Plank at Fear the Fin:

I'm not sure if this is a trend, but it's interesting- both wins this series came after an "emotional" change to the team. Torrey Mitchell's return in game three brought a 4-3 victory, while a meeting between McLellan and his big guns prompted last night's win. While they don't have any opportunities left in that regard, having Carlyle question the validity of your game winning goal could be some decent bulletin board material. It's either that or call and see if Arturs Irbe would like to suit up for one last playoff run.

I'm curious if there is a single Wings fan who doesn't want the Sharks to win this series. Or at least win tonight, so that if we get the Ducks it can potentially be on one day's rest.


April 26, 2009

Patrick Roy: ruining lives since 1986

In the year 2039, when writing The Triple Deke will be obsolete because every thought we have will be translated to text in real time, you'll get to see how much heroin we do.

But aside from that, you'll see that 30 years later, we're still going to have this image lodged in our brains: Patrick Roy pointing at a little girl and making her cry.



Is it the 2nd round yet?

April 25, 2009

I love hockey

Babcock would've just stared at the guy until he soiled himself.

April 24, 2009

This conversation will never end

The Puck Stops Here. I have a like/meh relationship with this site. Today is a "meh" day, as it brings up yet another Osgood in the Hall debate.

The gaping hole in the argument is that there is no point in Osgood’s career where it is possible to make an argument that he was the best goaltender in the NHL. No point where you can make an argument that for an extended period of time he was number two or number three, stuck behind future Hall of Famers either. The closest thing to such an argument is the 1995/96 season where Osgood finished on the Second Team All Star and was runner up to the Vezina Trophy. He was a distant second to Vezina winner Jim Carey in the voting. This was in a league with Dominik Hasek, Patrick Roy, Ed Belfour, Curtis Joseph, Martin Brodeur and others. The Vezina voting that year was seen as a group of underdogs, who never again deserved that level of Vezina support. Nevertheless, there is one season where it is possible to argue Osgood was the second best goalie in the league. That clearly puts him among a good group of goalies (including Roman Turek and Bob Froese).

Roman Turek's career playoff stats:

Bob freeze pop's career playoff stats:

I'm not going to lie to you -- I'm 23 years old. I have no fucking clue who Bob Froese is. But in essence, that sort of makes a point on it's own. Ozzie has more rings than Ol' Bob has playoff wins.

Turek's longest playoff run was 2001, when the Blues made the conference finals. Aside from that, the 2000 Blues won 51 games in the regular season and the West's #1 seed, only to lose to the Sharks in Round One.


First of all, I'm confused on the timing of this. It sounds like something that should be saved for the Summer, like, hopefully after Ozzie lifts the Cup again. Especially since that's a distinct possibility. A guy canNOT win three Cups in goal and be kept out of the Hall, or at least I would think.

Secondly, I acknowledge that all of us non-voters have different criteria for what a Hall Of Fame player looks like. Varying opinions are expected, and above all they're an OK thing to have. I happen to have one: I find it hard to take somebody seriously when they think Alex Ovechkin already is a HOF-er .

Finally, the "never one of the top goalies" thing. I not only tend to stay away from this, I think that it's not as important as, you know, Playoff success. Is Luongo a HOF-er right now? Kipper? Lundqvist? These are all guys that are almost universally acknowledged as being "better" than Ozzie, but they haven't won dick yet. Of course you wouldn't put them in the Hall yet. It's a matter of personal views, but I'll take a solid playoff laden resume over everything else.

Hockey: where too many BJ's is a bad thing

Feeling curious as to how BJ's and their faithful view last night's Too Many Men drama.

First, Clint Clark at The Cannon.

I'm not going to whine about the too many men call. It totally blows that it decided the game. The refs were calling a very loose game in the 3rd and then pulled out that call in the final minutes. We had our chances in this series. It would have been great to see OT Playoff hockey, but it is what it is. The following beer bottle tossing was disgusting and dangerous. I know fans get pissed, but you can't throw crap on the ice when our guys are out there. Very low class move.

Honorable, Clint. Nicely put.

Michael Arace at Puck-Rakers spoke with supervisor of officials, Kevin Collins.

He said (the call) is automatic. He said, "How could I live with myself if I didn't make the call? It's the right call." He said, hypothetically, that if the player in Modin's position doesn't touch the puck, then there is no whistle.

More Rakers: Mike Commodore, talking.

"To lose an elimination game, when there were no holds barred, on a call by a linesman . . . It's just not right."

You know what's not right? Everything you do in life, Mike. Oh, and that clip of Babcock, talking about how "being 'physical' is not running around like a chicken with your head cut off"? We have a hunch as to who he was talking about.

Over at Bethany's Hockey Rants:

The final goal for the Red Wings came off a controversial call (one I missed thanks to the drunk boys in front of me who were a little confused about how playoff OT actually worked), the fans were mad and let it show after the goal by throwing crap on the ice, something I don’t support at all...I really was just happy that there were no octopi on the ice.

All things considered, the BJ crowd last night should be remembered first for being loud and standing on their feet for the last two periods, and secondly for the littering thing. But still:

... thanks to the drunk boys in front of me who were a little confused about how playoff OT actually worked ...

That is absolutely priceless.


Do the San Jose Sharks hate their fans?

Sharks 0-4 Ducks

"I think our character was questioned tonight," Sharks Coach Todd McLellan said.

By the time the door to the Sharks' dressing room opened, most of the players' stalls were empty. But a few players were there to face the tough inquiries. You could almost feel invisible waves of frustration emanating off Jeremy Roenick. "For some reason," he said with quiet disgust, "we were stale."

Roenick candidly acknowledged that the Sharks had not shown any emotion related to desperation in the final month of the regular season. It's catching up to them now. They were shut out just twice in the regular season. They've been shut out twice in this series.

Ironically, the only possible thing that can save the Sharks at this point would be a speech of Mighty Ducks proportions.


This is a little overdue, but it's necessary. And awesome.

Wings @ Blue Jackets - The 4th is the hardest

Western Conference Quarterfinal, Game 4
Red Wings 6-5 Blue Jackets


This game had a little bit of everything, except OT (thank Christ.)

Given the circumstances, that probably was the least stressful close game possible -- up 3 games to none in the opening round after thoroughly dominating all three games. But because it is the playoffs, and because it's hockey, the title of "least stressful" game doesn't mean all that much. It's still hell on the heart no matter how you dress it up.

It's a recap.

  • Start of the game: Red Wings get a power play after Dorsett missed a check on the tall guy, then they exchanged words for some reason, and before you know it Columbus has done the dumbest thing possible -- take a maniaclly stupid penalty three minutes in when an early goal is the last thing you need to happen. What's next? A Wings goal of course.
  • Line 1A was dominant on the 2nd goal. Pav was being Pav holding the puck in the zone against two players; Hossa flew around the net, hanging on to the puck with one hand. Homer knocks in a loose puck to break the tie, with his backside halfway down Mason's throat.

  • Fil punked Rick Nash en route to creating the Cleary goal. Nash had to waste him in that spot and he didn't. Instead Fil brushes him off as if he wasn't half his size, and then Cleary eventually took advantage of Steve Mason not holding the post.
  • After a 3-1 first period, things started to get way too loose. After giving up a goal to make it 3-2, the Wings were way disorganized coming off a change and Columbus tied the game.
  • The Wings would answer. What an unbelievable shift by Marian Hossa. He and the rest of that line looked absolutely frightening the whole series. Might want to keep track of where that guys is.
  • Another dumb penalty. Nash crosschecks Raf in the Wings zone, while CBJ was on the kill. Hitchcock had to have been pulling his ball hair out. And what the hell did Raf do to deserve all the shit he got from Columbus? He took a beating this series.
  • Homer made an excellent pass to the slot for Hos, netting his second goal of the game. This line is unfair.
  • Ozzie's first real big gaffe of the series was made when his glove let him down on Kris Russell's goal. Needed to make that save. It was at this point that concern for whatever injury is bothering him was brought up by Ken and Mick. There were a couple shots of Ozzie wincing in pain, and he looked like he was avoiding putting weight on his left side when he would get up. When this apparent "injury" occurred in Game 3, we didn't think anything of it because he seemed to hop up from his knees to his feet just fine. But he looked bothered for a good stretch of this game
  • I haven't seen a TV interview with Hos this year that didn't include the phrase, "this is why you came to Detroit, isn't it?"
  • The CBJ crowd was awesome for the entire game up until the littering part at the end. Excellent playoff atmosphere.
  • Unreal way to end the game. You kept expecting the Wings to score the 6th goal, then for about 10 solid minutes the Wings lost controll, battles on the boards, and got too sloppy. A Columbus goal seemed inevitable. And then the most unthinkable thing happened -- too many dudes with 1:34 to play. Chimera is still bitching about the penalty as we speak. The guy was yelling at the refs like they just wrote him a $400 parking ticket.
  • Never question Jiri Hudler's toughness. He tried to commit suicide by taking the puck to the net, and the Mule scored his easiest goal ever. Game over. Series over. Have to admit: if that penalty was called on us in the same exact situation, our heads would've fallen off. But it was a pretty huge brain shit on the part of the BJ bench. Here's what Hitchcock had to mumble afterward:
"By the rulebook, it's probably the right call. By the circumstances of the game, I didn't like the call. ... Unless it's obvious, let's play," said Hitchcock, who said the third period had been loosely called to that point.

  • A comical number of Red Wings had a great series. The Mule/Hank/Cleary line was very good, putting up 15 points while keeping Rick Nash in check. Lidstrom had 4 points and was pissing excellence on the back line. Darren Helm was a blinding comet of hope and glory. Women shouldn't be allowed to reproduce without Jonathan Ericsson's seed. Oz was as good as can be for three games until the floodgates opened in the final one. The Jiri/Fil/Sammy unit was suberb. And Brad Stuart was a rock.

More to come tomorrow. Maybe. For some reason it feels like there's a dozen other things that need to be said. But whatever, we've got like six weeks until the next game.

And Derek Dorsett beats children, you can just tell.

April 23, 2009

Wings @ Blue Jackets pregame - Columbus juggles lines in vain attempt to look competitive

The Jackets practiced with these lines according to the Columbus Post Dispatch:




It just doesn't matter right now. Hitchcock could throw all the names into a hat and do the lines that way -- he's never going to find a matchup that doesn't make him want to kill himself.

And Jan Hejda didn't skate. That would be a huge blow for the BJ's (fellatio joke).


Your three Nick Lidstrom Award finalists: Mike Green, Zdeno Chara and the trophy's namesake.(NHL.com)

This time around, Lidstrom is again a nominee, but the outcome is not so certain. Not because Lidstrom had an off year, but because of the strong candidacies of Chara and Green.

If the Captain didn't have an off year, then the award should be his, period. It's a simple formula really.


Drapes will be sitting out yet again. (Khan)

"I (ask the doctor) every morning to see where we're at, and I haven't gotten anything positive,'' Draper said. "It's really in the doc's hands. Once he says yeah, away we go."

Okay. As a fan base we've discussed at length what the hell is wrong with him. It's a fucking mystery. The only way the injury report could be more vague would be if he was listed as "Whatever". So we're just going to say what you're all thinking but are too scared to say aloud:

Kris Draper has chronic diarrhea.


Franzen-Zetterberg-Draper (subbing for Cleary)



Draper continues to practice but not play, while Cleary plays but doesn't practice.


J.B. on the contrast in poise between the Wings' youngsters and the Jackets' "veterans" (Bingo Bango).

I would say that our young guys, Ericsson and Helm, seem to be playing with the poise of veterans. A controlled and productive effort from them on every shift....And honestly, Commodore has also been around long enough to stop acting like an utter Donkey Dick, or a 'playground bully' and get his job done.


Hope we never get to an age where this type of thing isn't funny anymore.


Cock Cup standings: 3-0 Babs. With a win tonight he can clinch the championship against his bitter rival Hitch, and secure this for his trophy cabinet.

Recap probably tomorrow. Go Wings.

April 22, 2009

Wings @ Blue Jackets - Next please

Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game 3
Red Wings 4-1 Blue Jackets

The first two playoff posts were about Chris Osgood, and how amazed we were at his play.

Yeah no shit -- everyone is. But to be honest last night seemed like the best performance out of the three. His rebound control was pristine. Not one time did he flinch. We wouldn't give a damn if we started the next 13 posts following a win by talking about how good Ozzie was. Hell we might even have to start cutting and pasting at the rate he's going. Yes, we'd have to say goodbye to our seven-figure Blogger salary, but if it means #12 is on the way? We'd burn this bitch to the ground.

Here's some other stuff that we thought about during the game that we've put into text for you to read.

  • The one goal Ozzie did allow was attributed to being a man down, and an inability to clear the puck. It was a shame he didn't get the shutout, he deserved it.
  • The first goal: Homer makes a defensive play (?), initiates a rush, and scores from an inch out 67 seconds in following a rebound. Absolutely perfect start against a team playing their first ever home playoff game.
  • Babcock sneakily put Hossa out with Helm and Kopy early on, which was brilliant. The Homer/Pav/Hossa remained in tact for the majority though.
  • There was a camera shot of Steve Mason with angry eyes. It was frightening. It's like somebody in the first row was holding up a naked picture of his mom.
  • Mick continued to refer to Raffi Torres as "dangerous", which I think is Mick-speak for "dirty".
  • The second goal was an uplifting experience, for it was nice to see something good happen to Brian Rafalski and Dan Cleary in the same play. Raf did an expert job walking down the line and then turning toward the net. And then Cleary pulled the equvilent of a fade-away jumper in traffic to get the goal.
  • At one point there was an "Ozzzz-Goooood" taunt. Columbus, bless your little heart.
  • Jakub Voracek has 27 minor penalties this series.
  • Brad Stuart almost killed R.J. Umberger. It seriously looked like a person getting hit by a car. After dusting off the cobwebs Umberger gained his footing, but it took him a minute. I can't imagine that Stuart has ever laid as good of a body check as that one.
  • Then our boy Commodore tried to get retribution in the form of Dan Cleary 30 seconds later, but missed and flew into the Wings bench. If you watch the replay of this you can faintly hear Babcock telling Commodore "your mom has a penis."
  • And then, Commodore is preoccupied with thoughts of kissing men, leaves Zetterberg wide open in the slot and it's 3-0. God that felt great, to score just as the crowd was trying to get back into it. All in all Mike Commodore should probably just retire and take up knitting.
  • Where were all the "Detroit sucks" chants?
  • Brad Stuart made a great play to keep the puck out of the net in the 3rd, temporarily preserving the shutout. To do that in a three goal game late in the 3rd shows how bad they wanted another goose egg. What a game he had.
  • Just a so-so performance from Marian Hossa. The strange home/road difference in his play continues.
  • Great game from the Mule, his overall game continues to grow by the minute.

April 21, 2009

Wings @ Blue Jackets pregame - It's good to be Henrik Zetterberg

(Enlarge it.)


These are the combos that the Wings used in practice yesterday according to Ansar Khan.

Holmstrom-Datsyuk-Hossa Franzen-Zetterberg-Draper (for Cleary) Hudler-Filppula-Samuelsson Kopecky-Helm-Maltby

Meech-Chelios (scratches)



Get ready for this:

In place of "Let's Go Jackets" some friends and I would love to hear the following chant loud and proud in Nationwide tomorrow:




I've always enjoyed it when opposing fans focus all of their ire on the Wings rather than cheer on their own team. But I've never seen anyone openly call for it. I love the playoffs.


Rodney Stuckey in a White Sox hat.



Recap late late late tonight. Go Wings.


Well that's cool

As seen at MacLeod's lounge, Andreas Lilja participated in a live chat here.

Most of the responses have been rather generic, but I bet that juggling dozens of questions at once can get hectic, especially for a guy who's brain is bleeding. However, this was worthy of a laugh:

(Comment from guest) -- "who has the worst playoff beard on the team?"
(Lilja) -- "Right now, it has to be Filppula. He could have started one at Christmas, and still not have a good one."

Some questioners tried to pry into mysterious subjects like Draper's injury or Darren McCarty's status. I can only imagine Ken Holland standing in the back with Lilja's contract and a lighter, and any time Draper's name would come up, Lilja would nervously look back and see Holland threatening to set the contract on fire.

Like you needed statistcal proof

Joe Thornton is not a "playoff" type of guy. I am shocked. (From the Rink)

James Mirtle gets crafty with some postseason stats on some notable names. In his post you may notice that the name Pavel Datsyuk actually appears before Thornton's name on this list, but as Mirtle points out ...

One of the problems with an analysis like this is that it counts every game as being equal, whether those postseason games were played as an 18-year-old rookie, 27-year-old sniper or a 37-year-old greybeard, and perhaps that's not fair. But it is interesting to see some names you'd expect — like Thornton — mixed in amongst those you'd think were established playoff performers like Selanne and Tanguay.

So Pav's points/game differential is still larger between regular and post seasons, yet he's on his way to his third straight successful playoff run. On the other hand you have Joe, who, well, needs a heart transplant or something. Anyway, it's interesting stuff so I commend Mirtle for info, which I'm sure means a lot to him since he wouldn't know TTD even if we punched him in the face.

Reg. Playoffs

Player PTS/G PTS/G Diff %
1 Sullivan 0.80 0.38 -0.42 -52.5%
2 Selanne 1.07 0.71 -0.36 -33.6%
3 Vanek 0.82 0.46 -0.36 -43.9%
4 Datsyuk 0.99 0.65 -0.34 -34.3%
5 Thornton 1.01 0.68 -0.33 -32.7%
6 Whitney 0.82 0.50 -0.32 -39.0%
7 Gagne 0.80 0.50 -0.30 -37.5%
8 Tanguay 0.88 0.60 -0.28 -31.8%
9 Tkachuk 0.91 0.64 -0.27 -29.7%
10 Demitra 0.92 0.65 -0.27 -29.3%
11 Hemsky 0.79 0.57 -0.22 -27.8%
12 Getzlaf 0.91 0.69 -0.22 -24.2%
13 Pominville 0.80 0.59 -0.21 -26.3%
14 Alfredsson 0.99 0.79 -0.20 -20.2%
15 Kariya 1.04 0.85 -0.19 -18.3%

April 20, 2009

We're totally improving to 1-15 next year

(espn) ...

The franchise revealed subtle changes to the logo and how the word "Lions" is spelled out during a news conference Monday attended by dozens of fans.

Detroit stumbled to the NFL's first 0-16 season last year and has the first pick Saturday in the NFL draft.

The leaping lion appears more fierce, while the team name features an italicized slant.

The team says the changes are consistent with its "sense of mission and direction."

New trim lines also have been added to team uniforms. The team's Honolulu blue, white and black colors remain unchanged.

Hard Euros

Dave Dye provided an entertaining read this morning on the Wings increase in physicality in Games 1 and 2.

"I think people get so caught up with the passports on our team," general manager Ken Holland said. "We've got a real strong European influence ... Europeans can't fight, but they're not going to back off. They're not intimidated. They're tremendous competitors. They're going to go to all the hard areas. They're going to take the physical play. They're going to give the physical play."

This made me smile:

"They look like a different team," Columbus captain Rick Nash said.

So to put it another way, Rick, you could say that the Wings, uh, sorta flipped a switch? Or something?

I know that it's been only two games, honestly I know this. But if the Wings keep up this pace, they're going to set a strange precedent. They frustrated us for 82 games because they didn't win 79 of them, and that's the kind of potential that we saw in them. We were worried that 82 games of up-and-down play (which still somehow brought 51 wins) was going to carryover into the postseason, and the bad habits that had been formed for 6 months wouldn't be broken before the end of Round One.

Wow, do we ever look like we don't know a damn thing about sports right now. We'd call it "inconsistency", but the Wings were probably sitting back, chilling out, laughing even, and waiting to unleash everything they had once the playoffs began. Through two games, that's exactly what has happened. 14 more and all future regular seasons will be rendered obsolete.

April 19, 2009

Wings vs. Blue Jackets - "I don't doubt myself. Ever."

Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game 2
Red Wings 4-0 Blue Jackets

Could this team have come up with a better start?

Ozzie was once again the opposite of Regular Season Chris Osgood. He's an entirely different human being. No he didn't have to win the game by himself, but when does he ever have to? As long as we're not thinking too much about whomever is between the pipes, and the crowd chants his name 400,000 times, it's usually been a good game. So yeah, things are looking pretty good. As for the rest of the 'cap ...

  • The first bullet of this recap has to be the noticeably redone Rahmani eye commercial with Datsyuk. I love that Pav got all gussied up to go down to Rahmani's place to deliver the exact same line, only in a slightly different tone and with some hand-movement. The hand moving really sells it for me.
  • Mickey Redman went on a marathon rant about composite sticks that trumps anything he has ever said about composite sticks prior to tonight. He probably mumbles in his sleep about broken sticks, twitching and running like when a dog dreams about chasing squirrels in the back yard. It was epic -- the rant lasted 2 hours and 45 minutes from beginning to end.
  • Raf's goal = all Homer. Homer got the first touch off the face off and sends it back to the point. He immediately goes to the net, drawing the attention of Fedor Tyutin. Raf flings one at the net, and it goes off Tyutin's stick and in. Now, for all of you BJ fans who didn't know what hockey was until two weeks ago, let it be known that Tomas Holmstrom represents the fine line between luck and making your luck. You can't just say "oh, if it doesn't hit Tyutin's stick, it misses the net ..." Wrong. If Homer wasn't the best at what he does, Tyutin wouldn't do something as desperate as lunge with his stick toward him, thus creating the deflection opprotunity in the first place.
  • Brad Stuart had a solid game. More than just a couple times we noticed him make nifty defensive plays with his stick. His best play was his NHL 09-inspired dive to break up a BJ breakaway. For those that have played the game, you know what we're talking about.
  • Pav's power play goal was one of those power plays where you knew the Wings were going to score. Hossa sells the wrist shot perfectly and sends a perfect pass to Pav, who wisely just redirected the puck instead of slapping it.
  • (Heads up to Osrt and cmk: this is the nicest thing that has ever been said about Filppula on this blog) Doesn't Fil look like he's playing in his 12th or 13th playoffs? He plays like a wily veteran already. And his confidence isn't only noticeable, it's flat out obvious. Seemingly each possession he's finding a way to wiggle the puck deep into the zone, and the Jiri/Fil/Sam line is consistently holding those possessions for large chunks of time.
  • The Hank goal was sweet. Mule occupies two guys down low, leaves it for Z and he comes up with his trademark wrister to the roof.
  • Okay. Voracek with two sticks. I don't care what you interpret the rules to say on that one -- if you think it's cool to do that, you should be getting gang-banged in a prison somewhere.
  • Hank's line on Rick Nash = 1 shot allowed through two periods. Total domination through two games.
  • Penalty minutes: CBJ - 34, DET - 8
  • Vermette is dog shit. Pushes Datsyuk into Mason, and then reacts like Pav broke into his house and raped his wife. Columbus looks like a team that's a) never been in the playoffs, and b) young and stupid. But I will give them credit for not completely losing it and running at everyone like some other teams probably would have. Mike Commodore is a fucking clown though.
  • The best part about a Jiri Hudler goal is that humongous smile that always comes with it.

Around the 1:05 mark is one of the five or six greatest moments of our lives:

"I can't HEAR you!"

April 18, 2009

Wings vs. Blue Jackets pregame - There is no pregame

The rest of the Wingosphere is on the ball today with afternoon thoughts on Game 2. We have no such time today, but will be back late late tonight with a recap.

Go Wings.

Exhibit #9,462 of ESPN being a terrible hockey source

At the time of this screen shot, Vancouver was up 2-0 with 10 minutes to go. Click to enlarge; lower right highlighted circle thing.

Is it too much to expect them to get a fucking score right? Is there like only one guy assigned to keep an eye on the Blues/Canucks game, and he's watching CBC on a 13 inch TV and sees the score from across the break room or something? I check ESPN daily, sometimes hourly for updates like many of you do, and the frequency in errors in NHL-related stuff is insane. So what's the excuse? Why is this so hard?

April 17, 2009

Ken Hitchcock stopped eating for two seconds to say something


"I was thinking about this this morning after watching the tape. I don't think Detroit would do anything in drag racing, because they would never pass the Christmas Tree test. The would be red-lighted (for a false start) every time because their wingers cheat,'' Hitchcock said. "So we're going to cheat just like they are. The power-play goal they scored, their winger went in on the move, good for him. We're going to do the same thing. It'll be interesting to see who gets kicked out first.''

In related news, Ken Hitchcock's neck looks like a ball sack.

Wings vs. Blue Jackets - "Oz-zee, Oz-zee"

Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game 1
Red Wings 4-1 Blue Jackets

This one is dedicated to reader Tram. His (or her? I've been fooled before, although usually it involves a poorly lit back alley, heroin, and a complete re-examination of the meaning of life) optimistic comments over the past few weeks regarding one Chris Osgood were thought by me to be the result of somebody watching Teletubbies for 14 straight hours, searching for a stream of the Mighty Ducks movies and accidentally coming across our site, and then feeling compelled to explore the comment space by spreading some positive Osgood vibe. Now I'm rethinking things. I believe that you, sir/ma'am, know what the fuck you were talking about. And I commend you for that. I'd also like to know how you can follow the Wings and not be a raving lunatic like the rest of us, and, perhaps, someday I'll have you write up a toutorial so that we have some guidelines. And if you all of a sudden stopped reading TTD and don't see this? Then I hate you for making me double check the spelling of "Teletubbies" which of course led me to watching it in a hypnotic state for a full 10 minutes on Youtube. Onto the recap.

  • There was a distinct "you're hot!" during Karen Newman's national anthem. Good omen.
  • We got our first shock to the system very early after a huge give-away by Stuart in front of Ozzie. Ho hum, here comes the obvious goa.... wait, wait a minute, he saves it. What? This completely contradicts an entire season's worth of trends and bad habits. Defensive breakdown and Oz bails them out? Fucking. Batshit.
  • The early penalties were mind-humpingly frustrating. I don't know if that's just the Playoffs in me talking or what, but it put me in a foul mood.
  • The Blue Jackets got 13 of their 21 shots in the first period. I'm willing to bet a number of those came in the first half of the period as well, but of course I don't have proof of this. Anyway I was a little worried after a few long passes weren't cut off between the blue lines, but that trend didn't take hold for the rest of the game. The Wings did a spectacular job clamping down and holding the BJ's to two shots the entire 3rd period. They literally could have shot 100% in the 3rd and still would have lost by a goal.
  • Physical Wings: out-hit the BJ's 37 to 26. I was shocked how they were throwing their bodies around to be honest; clearly that was a part of Babs' game plan, to take the physicality to the bigger Columbus team. The Wings had one player (Stuart) who had more than 130 hits during the regular year, whereas Columbus had five. I'm curious how this will play out the rest of the series.
  • This just dawned on me: it's the Cock series. Babcock vs. Hitchcock. You can tell me that's the dumbest thing I've ever written, but whatever. It's staying. We're up 1-0 in the Cock Cup.
  • Are we sure this is Ericsson's first playoff? Doesn't he look a little too comfortable back there on the blue line for this to be his first time? And don't tell me that he was lucky on his first career playoff goal -- he obviously was baiting Malhotra to stick his glove up to ricochet the puck into the net, because he knew Manny would be that dumb.
  • I'm giving a golf clap to anyone who went to the game; the atmosphere looked great and the noise was noticeable from my chair at home. Well done.
  • Of course no calls for Homer, who had a heated feud with Klesla brewing all night. There was so much clutching and grabbing that I'd have to call the sexuality of a few BJ players into question. I've said it before, and I'll probably say it a dozen other times, but I have no idea how Homer does what he does. For him to accept the punishment and deal with being blackballed by every referee in the league, he has to love playing hockey more than anybody else out there, or he has to be legally retarded.
  • Jiri Hudler records the first Wings goal of the playoffs, off of a Columbus defensive breakdown. Everyone always says that the underdogs have to bury their chances when they get them, but honestly, don't both teams? The favorites need to bury those same chances to keep the underdog's confidence to a minimum.
  • The Umberger goal for the Jackets: Kronner tries a drop pass in the D zone without looking and Raf wasn't there to support, who stopped skating on the play as the replay showed. You'll probably read a lot today about Raf having a subpar game. He took two penalties and then had this gaffe to wrap the bow on a questionable performance.
  • Marian Hossa is on a mission. He's a beast.
  • The most comical thing of the night was when a puck went off of Sammy's stick and hit, who else, Dan Cleary on the Bench. This poor bastard. He can't escape Sam's accident-prone goofiness on the ice (he's the one who broke Dan's jaw last year, remember, and has been struck by at least a couple shots in front of the net), or any of his other teammates for that matter. And now the bench isn't even safe for him. I wouldn't be surprised one bit if I wake up one morning and read that Cleary snapped and brought a gun to work.
  • Awesome night for the third liners: Fil = 2 Assists, Jiri = goal and assist, Sammy = 2 assists, five hits and somehow no missed shots.
  • Finally, how about this quote from Osgood (DetNews): “I don’t doubt myself ever,” Osgood said. “People that don’t know me do. I’ve played for 15 years. I have the most wins in Red Wings playoff history for a reason, not because I’m a bad goalie. Oh, and tell The Triple Deke to lick my taint.”
Oz, you do that 15 more times and you've got deal.

Go Wings.

April 16, 2009

Ozzie, for Christ's sake, dude

"Everybody makes too big of a deal out of me," Osgood said Thursday, sounding slightly exasperated. "I'm just part of the team." (AP)

I don't even know what to add to this. God help us all.

Wings vs. Blue Jackets pregame

Not that you need me to tell you this, but it's sorta getting to be that time.

For the men in red:



Conklin (RWC)

Drapes is out, but Cleary appears to be go for launch. Darren Helm has made his return and is going to run down pucks like Tommy Lee Jones chasing down Harrison Ford. Christopher Osgood is your 2009 playoff starting goaltender.

Here's 19 BJ's for you.






Mason (yup)


Matt Saler is clutch with an excellent pre-playoffs write up. (OtW)

The Jackets have the personnel to make this interesting (a sports euphamism for “terrifying”), and it goes beyond young Steve Mason and Rick Nash. Kristian Huselius, Fredrik Modin, Raffi Torres, Jason Chimera, and some others all have it within themselves to wreck havoc, particularly if the Wings don’t flip that much-discussed switch right off the bat. Even if they do flip the switch, they’re in for a challenge.

Matt has the Wings winning in five, after losing the opener.

And because everyone else did it:

Recap late tonight.

April 15, 2009

Red Wings playoff anti-preview: The All-Nemesis/All-Goat teams

We don't have any fancy Blue Jackets knowledge to drop on you. No stats, no depressing Rick Nash soliloquy, no Steve Mason voodoo shit.

Instead, we're harking back upon the nightmarish past of previous Red Wings' playoff failures. Sure they've won four Cups in our lifetimes. But that hasn't exempted us from bouts of sickening anguish -- not in the slightest.

The Triple Deke brain trust has conspired with Cam Kittle from When Cameron Was In Egypt's Land to bring you: the All-Nemesis Team, and the All-Goat Team (Like our Top 10 Red Wing Games, this is limited to the era that we have actually seen). It started as our idea, but Cam (The Wing-o-sphere's "Prince of Prose" ... our words, not his) took it to another level, and for that reason we're keeping his teams intact for the most part and just chipping in with petty comments. Without further adu, enjoy.


The All-Nemesis Team:
G - J.S. Giguere '03

Cam: There's really no one else who can fill this spot. I refuse to fill it with Patrick Roy because a) I hate him, b) the Wings once scored nine goals on him and c) he reeeally didn't steal any whole series from the Wings like this Lucky Duck did. The Wings have been swept only six times since 1950, and the 2002-03 loss to Anaheim was one of them. Giguere was the reason. The only reason, really. I was so tempted to put "Marc-Andre Fluery '08 (Game 5 only)" in this spot just because of how personally violated I felt after leaving the Joe at 1 a.m. that night and having to fly home out $800 bucks without seeing the Wings hoist the Cup. But they won two nights later...sooo that takes some of the sting away. Giguere takes it.

Tyler: Giguere, simply, is the only posible answer. The Wings have faced Patrick Roy the most times (five in all, 3 series wins and 2 losses), but it's hard to make him a first string nemesis after the Statue of Choad and the ensuing 7-0 blowout in 2002. Roy was essentially Red Wings' property after those games. Giguere on the other hand single handedly swept the defending champions in 2003 (one of the most confusing times of my sports-watching life ... I just couldn't comprehend that the Wings could go winless in a playoff series. It literally wasn't until the Ducks scored the OT series winner in Game 4 that I stopped believing the Wings would win that series. And for an encore? 2007 -- just a horrible, horrible series that I can't barely bring myself to talk about. Yet.

D - Scott Stevens '95

Cam: I've never liked him. I think he's a dirty player who threw his arms up and got away with a bunch of calls. But to make this list, he had to hurt the Wings in the playoffs. Try 1995 on for size. The Wings should have won four straight cups from '95-'99 in my opinion, but this hit
turned everything around and knocked off any momentum the heavily favored Wings had at the time. Damn. It didn't matter that much because I became an obsessed fan during that playoff run, but it hurts a little in retrospect.

Tyler: That hit was catastrophic, I thought Kozlov was dead. Stevens was an assassin on the blue line, and because I'm still scarred by how handily the Devils won in '95, he gets the nod. He finished with 8 points in 20 games that postseason, but that hit was worth at least 15 "We're Fucked"s. Yeah, it's a stat.

D - Chris Pronger '06, '07

Cam: Sasquatch: the affectionate name many of us A2Y fans have come to love calling Pronger. He gets that title for a reason. He has no brain, he's an overall asshole and he just skates around trying to cheap shot anyone he can. The only problem: he's a menace to the Wings. While his Ducks have been losing feathers for the past couple years, his year as an Oiler when he upset the top-seeded Wings was painful and the following year as a Duck when the Wings went down in the West Finals was heartbreaking. So, hate him or loathe him, he makes the list.

Tyler: A rather easy yet necessary selection. Cam hits the finer points of Pronger's character, so here's some statistical backup: In 2006, as an Oiler versus the Wings in Round 1, he had two goals and four assists in six games -- including a three assist performance in that disheartening Game 5 at the Joe. In 2007 as a Duck, he added three more assists in five games (t'was a six game series, as you recall ... he was suspended a game for the previously linked cheapshot. His awesome leadership on full display once again.)

RW - Claude Lemieux '95, '96

Cam: It's not possible to make an all-nemesis list without this "human being." I put that in quotes because I question how any person could commit the offenses he has and still be considered "human." He's a menace to society and a menace to hockey. And while that's certainly an exaggeration, he was at least a menace to the Wings. I hate him more than any player ever, if you remember my post from a year ago, and he was a key part in the 1995 and 1996 playoff heartbreaks to the Devils and Avs. Some of it might be forgotten if the Wings play the Sharks and Kronner drops the gray-haired Lemieux for a career-ending concussion, but his hit on Draper will never be forgiven.

Tyler: Claude Lemieux drinks his own sperm.

LW - Adam Deadmarsh '96, '99, '00, '01

Cam: The name just sends shivers down my spine. Deadmarsh. He scored so many timely goals while he was on the Avalanche and then again when he was traded to the Kings and they upset the Wings in the first round in 2001. The worst part: he's not even that good! The guy sucks most of the year, is an average ice-eater in the playoffs against any random team but somehow buries Detroit whenever he sees that winged wheel. Annoying.

Tyler: What an annoying little shit. As a King in 2001, he had 3 goals and 2 assists in the final three games of that dispicable first round series against the Wings -- including the overtime winner that sent Ozzie packing (for a while, anyway). For his Avalanche days: 5 points and a +4 in five games in 2000. 4 goals, 3 assists, +8 in six games in 1999. And as for '96 and '97, well, it's a total bitch finding box scores or game logs past 1998 for some reason. Frankly if somebody knows how to find this shit, I'd like to know. Honestly. This is probably Adam Deadmarsh's fault -- he ruins everything.

C - Peter Forsberg '96, '99, '00

Cam: Forsberg...ohh Forsberg. For a period, there was no one more talented in the league. He could score at will against the Wings, and certainly against Osgood. I don't know what it was, but Forberg could beat Ozzie with a blindfold and without a stick. I was never more scared of any player than I was of Forsberg in the late '90s and early '00s. He was just that good. That is...until the injury bug finally got to him. I guess the lockout
was good for something.

Tyler: Arguably the greatest Red Wing killer of my lifetime. He always, always came up huge against us. And God that pissed me off. Once again I'm limited to '99, '00 and '02 for stats, but for that time period, he had 10 goals and 13 assists in 18 playoff games against the Wings. And on top of everything, he looks like a serial rapist.


The All-Goat Team
G - Manny Legace '06

Cam: While Manny gets too much blame for the team loss against the Oilers in the first round of '06, he was not ready to be the starting playoff goalie for the Detroit Red Wings. He just wasn't. The team played bad and Dwayne Roloson was incredible, but I honestly think the team would have won with someone else in net. His mental demons got a hold of him and screwed the Wings for the series. I will say that Osgood in 1996 and 2001 was an honorable mention for this spot, but he'll be our playoff goalie this year and I can't be giving off any negative vibes right before the postseason.

Tyler: Ditto on the Ozzie thing. I'm not going there. So that said, there is no other choice aside from Manny Legace. He finished the 2006 first round debacle with a 2.65 GAA and .884 save %, which isn't terrible, but because we lost to Dwayne Roloson, Chris Pronger and an 8th seed, coming of a 58 win regular season, in Steve Yzerman's last year ....... I fucking hate hockey.

D - Andreas Lilja '07

Cam: You might notice that the picture above doesn't have Lilja in it. It shows Lebda and a sprawled Hasek next to Teemu Selanne right after his overtime goal sent the Ducks to a 3-2 series lead back to Anaheim in the '07 Western Conference Finals. But the whole play only happened because Lilja gave the puck away. Right to Selanne. I've never seen anything worse in the playoffs from a Wings defenseman, save the time when Paul Coffey scored on his own net in the '96 West Finals. And as good as Lilja has been this year, I can't take him out of this spot.

Tyler: This is pretty cut-throat, but you cannot leave Lilja off of an All-Goat team, even if it's for this one play. His fuck-up and Selanne's subsequent roof-job felt like a knife to the stomach. I will never, ever, get over Game 5 of the 2007 Western Conference Finals. We should've won the Stanley Cup that year. A turd shot ties the game with a minute left, Lilja trips over his ball sack, Selanne finishes, and then I'm left debating with myself whether to go with the noose or the Tylenol PM/Benadryl cocktail.

D - Mathieu Schneider '03

Cam: Not much reason behind this pick. I'm bitter that he left the Wings because I liked him, especially for the damn Ducks, and I'm able to justify his place here because of his invisibility in the '03 playoffs. I was so pumped that year. He was a great pickup at the trade deadline, but then was a -4, had zero points and took three penalties in the Ducks' sweep of the Wings. I'm really stretching the stats to fit my argument there, since no Wing had a good series that year, but Schnieder certainly didn't help.

Tyler: I'll go with Paul Coffey. Not only because of his own goal as mentioned above (and how in the shit is there not video of this??? I searched for 10 minutes and found nothing), but because of the trade that sent him and a certain other goat in exchange for that one guy, which of course led to two Stanley Cups. Anytime you're apart of the team's biggest transaction and it directly leads to that team winning a championship, you have certifiable goat DNA.

RW - Todd Bertuzzi '07

Cam: The 'Tuz is the sole black mark on Kenny Holland's nearly perfect GM resume. I hate him for that. The Wings picked him up and lost Shawn Matthias to get him at the deadline from Florida. Matthias hasn't done anything of note yet, but he's a great prospect lost nonetheless. And after playing less than five regular season games, Bertuzzi did nothing in the playoffs and then jumped ship to those damned Ducks right after the West Finals loss. As Yoda would say, "A disgrace to the logo, he is."

Tyler: Bertuzzi did absolutely nothing except waste a space in the Wings' locker room. Okay, he had 3 goals and 4 assists in 18 games and he was banged up ....... wait, why am I defending this guy? One of the most annoying things that I see in sports is media people or (gasp) bloggers question the toughness of player injuries, but fuck it, Bertuzzi is an exeption. Holland took a chance on him becuase the Wings needed a pinch of size and grit, and then Bert had every ailment known to man during that roller coaster 2007 playoff ride. Oh, and the next year he jumped ship to the Ducks like Schneider, which is morally reprehensible.

LW - Shawn Burr '95

Cam: Wow I'm stretching this. There just aren't that many ex-Wings or Wings that I dislike. There are some (look above), but not that many. So, simply because Shawn Burr was a bust as the Wings' first round pick in 1984 at seventh overall and did nothing in their Stanley Cup Finals loss to the Devils (did he even play?), he gets a place on the All-Goat team. I almost put Mikael Samuelsson right here because he ceaselessly misses the net and rarely scores, but again, he's on the current roster and I'm a bit of a pansy so I don't to root against him right before playoff time.

Tyler: I was thinking Sammy as well because he's just so damn goofy on the ice, and many of us haven't quite come to terms with Babcock's fascination with putting him at the point on the power play, and the fact that he's murdered 18 people in the last three years with wayward slapshots. But in the end, to make this team you either have to be a significant player who didn't produce, or you have to be known for a serious gaffe. And Sammy doesn't fit either of those two things. So who to pick then? While he isn't a natural winger, I can't let an All-Goat team pass without at least discussing Robert Lang. In his three year stay in Detroit, he teased us with his skill, often times leaving us questioning if we had seen his very best. Not always, but sometimes. In '06 he actually had a good series, going 3G-3A in six games. But the next postseason saw him score all of two goals in 18 games, and after that, the team cut ties with him for not getting enough bang for the buck.

C - Keith Primeau '90 - '96

Cam: I couldn't really come up with anything here. (Jason) Williams came to mind because he never did very much with the Wings and he's been great everywhere else. He didn't get as much playing time as he could have someplace else because the Wings were just too good, so he might not be really worthy of this spot. He is a current Blue Jacket though, so I will be heavily rooting for his demise soon anyway. Fedorov in '03 was another possibility, but I like Fed too much to put him anywhere on an All-Goat list. I still miss him.

Tyler: The #3 overall pick in the 1990 NHL Draft -- Keith Primeau. 64 career postseason games in a Wing uniform ... 6 goals. This of course includes an abismal performance in the 1996 playoffs (1 goal in 17 games, and it was an empty netter) after previously establishing himself as a regular season point-producer. He was a human vacuum of suck-i-tude that year. Keith never amounted to what the Red Wings needed him to be, and along with Paul Coffey he was sent to Hartford, and our prayers were answered in the form of the much less goat-y and far more clutch-y Brendan Shanahan.